Andy Priaulx to race on 'fantastic circuit' in Texas

TUDOR United SportsCar Championship - round 10 - 19th to 20th September

After a day’s testing at the Circuit of the Americas in Texas, ahead of the tenth round of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Andy Priaulx can’t wait to go racing there in the BMW Z4 GTLM he shares with America’s Bill Auberlen on what he has described as a “fantastic circuit”.

This weekend’s race is the penultimate one in the series and the BMW works driver would love to stand on the top step of the GTLM podium before the final flag falls in Road Atlanta on the 4th October: "I really can’t wait for the race weekend. I suspect it will be an extremely tough fight now for the final races. Corvette and Viper are really strong and a race win still eludes us at BMW this year! However, as always, we will fight hard and see what is possible.”

COTA just outside Austin is one of the newest circuits in the world, and when he tested there last week Andy instantly realised why so many drivers sing its praises : "I really can’t thank BMW enough for the great test we had at COTA, which means it is no longer a new track to me. What a fantastic circuit it is and I felt completely at home there. At the test I feel we made some good chassis changes and we have a good start set-up for our race weekend.

It has been a hard fought season and there is still a lot to play for. Currently Andy and Bill, who drive the black number 55 car, are joint third in the driver standings on 250 points with four other drivers, and among them are their BMW Team RLL team-mates, Dirk Muller and John Edwards, who race the white number 56 car. Antonio Garcia, who is leading the championship, has 270 points, and the winner of each round scores 35 points.

The action for the USCC cars starts on Thursday afternoon with the first free practice from 18.30 to 19.30. On Friday the next two sessions will be from 10.00 to 11.00 and 16.20 to 17.20, followed by qualifying for the GTLM class from 17.50 to 18.05. On Saturday the 2hrs 45 mins long race will start at 12.35. All these times are local CDT, which is six hours behind BST.

The circuit, which also hosts the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix, is 5.513 kilometres (3.4 miles ) long. The race, which is titled the Lone Star Le Mans, should be a tough one as the temperatures are expected to be in the thirties Celsius (nineties in Fahrenheit). For the American fans it will certainly be a sports car festival as on the same schedule is the fourth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship, which starts after the USCC race at 17.00 and runs for six hours.


Andy Priaulx has been keeping a close watch on what his fellow BMW works drivers have been achieving, and was delighted that Marco Wittmann has clinched the DTM drivers’ title in the eighth round of the championship today at the Lausitzring:

“I have seen Marco grow up in the BMW family over the years and know what a fantastic racing driver he is. I want to say a big congratulations to him, BMW Team RMG and everybody at BMW Motorsport for this great achievement. He has achieved a lot for a 24-year-old, and I am sure this is just the first of many titles in his touring car career."

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